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 Post subject: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 11:00 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:29 am
Posts: 45
Location: Michigan
Just searched Google related to bridges.

Evidently it’s a “train bridge” and not so much referred to as a [railroad bridge].

I was surprised, Shocked actually. (I guess I need to get out more often ; )

Do a search for yourself.

train bridge - About 222,000,000 results

railroad bridge - About 61,400,000 results

Do you call it a “train bridge”?

John


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 11:09 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:36 pm
Posts: 178
Depends if you are part of the uneducated public or an industry insider/railfan who knows the difference.

I was asked twice this summer if our GE 44 tonner ran on coal or diesel. Both times by adult men who appeared to have the intelligence to figure it out on their own. I mean it is black and does smoke a little when throttling up but it doesn't even have side rods dude.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:02 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:45 pm
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Location: Boyertown, PA
It is fun listening to the uneducated public, isn't it? One time at the Electric City Trolley Museum, there was a man telling people with children not to let them drop their paper conductor hats out of the window because it might give us a short circuit!On a Wanamaker Kempton and Southern trip I heard someone say not to stand near the open door facing GE 45 ton 7258 because we might inhale exhaust from the grille! On one occaision, someone discussing the Colebrookdale Railroad said it would be dangerous to do a caboose campout because another train might run into it as if it were on the mainline!

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 2:22 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:52 pm
Posts: 909
Hi,

Same can be asked about railroad car and a train car.

Obviously no one seems to recall the part of a woman's dress that might drag on the ground or carried by someone (as in a wedding) is also a train. It has nothing to do with cars at all.

To paraphrase an old old line, "never underestimate the inginuity of fools" or in this case never underestimate the uneducated for trying to sound intellegent. Never can pull it off.

Doug vV


Last edited by Dougvv on Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 10:07 am 

Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 1:37 pm
Posts: 895
Dougvv wrote:
... never underestimate the uneducated for tying to sound intellegent. Never can pull it off.[Doug vV


Sheesh, I guess not! ;-)

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2016 4:55 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2007 5:46 am
Posts: 2447
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Atkinson_Railroad wrote:
Just searched Google related to bridges. I was surprised, Shocked actually.
train bridge - About 222,000,000 results
railroad bridge - About 61,400,000 results

That's not real, it's an artifact of how search engines work. You will get arbitrary results like this for any random pair of words like rocket flower. It's gotten even worse now that Google does a lot of pre-processing of input and also doesn't strictly do all-word searches anymore.

Back in the day, your query would have done an "all-word" search: where the word "train" and "bridge" were both extant somewhere in the page. Or in a link to the page, in the anchortext or alt-text...Back in the day, Google would tell you it included a page solely on words in links. did that. today, they cast a wider net, like associating with text near links in the page, intra-site content (e.g. a page on nfl.com that doesn't have the word football but does have the word dolphins), image titles, even Facebook or Google+ postings linking to the page. Also word substitution (considering railway and railroad to be equivalent).

And lately Google seems to do what is called an "any word" search, for pages containing either train or bridge, using ranking to try to surface the pages it thinks you want. Obviously there are a lot more pages containing train, training or trained than there are railroad or railway. There certainly aren't 222 million pages that say "train bridge".

Back when I was a Yahoo, I couldn't ask for more than the top 1000 results, but I could send a query like "train bridge md5>=0x00000000 md5<0x00000FFF numresults=1000", which picks about 220 random URLs out of the 222 million. Having done this sort of thing more than a few times and looked at the results, I can assure you, in this sort of situation, it's all rubbish.

Nowadays if you want an all-word search, you need to search +train +bridge because the plus sign means "definitely this word".

For what you are trying to do, try the query +"train bridge" (quotes inclusive). The quotes tell the search engine you are looking for the exact phrase. This query takes a lot more computing power, so Google works to discourage such queries and won't do them by default.

Yahoo does that too, and I had to tell the proxy "don't alter this query" when doing my analytical queries like the above. They were usually "cache misses"... Search engines rely heavily on caching - most queries were made by someone else recently. That's one reason they alter your searches, it's cheaper to "correct" your query into an answer they have cached, rather than hard-compute a search for what you actually said. Especially since 95% of the time it's an error and you'll just correct it to a query that is in the cache.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2016 12:58 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8354
Location: Baltimore, MD
Here's another variation on the theme:

I went to Google.com and entered "railroad bridge" (WITH quotation marks, which is supposed to make it search for the specific two-word phrase) and got "about 968,000 results".

"train bridge" in quotes? "About 400,000 results".

And apparently the most popular reason for searching either term has to do with crossword puzzles using it as a clue for the seven-letter word "trestle".

It used to be that I could get different results by going to Google.co.uk or using private-browsing options in Firefox or Chrome. That doesn't work very well any more, as Google "analytics"--i.e. it spying on you and your IP address--keep getting better.

I actually had to forcibly beat a major newspaper humor columnist figuratively about the head with his own rolled-up newspaper because he kept persistently using Google searches to justify and reinforce his beliefs and opinions, but was blissfully unaware--until I told him and younger staffers confirmed--that Google continually re-calibrates its search results to "tell him what he wants to hear" based on his past searches and site clicks.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 11:22 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:29 am
Posts: 45
Location: Michigan
Enlightening replies related to Google search.

Thank you!

John


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2016 8:29 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2007 5:46 am
Posts: 2447
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Alexander D. Mitchell IV wrote:
Here's another variation on the theme:

I went to Google.com and entered "railroad bridge" (WITH quotation marks, which is supposed to make it search for the specific two-word phrase) and got "about 968,000 results".

"train bridge" in quotes? "About 400,000 results".

That's more like it. Even so, the long tail of those results will be complete rubbish, as I described above. Even if it contains those exact words, much of it will be web dictionary spam (clusters of pages which arrange every word in the dictionary in patterns to match every possible 2-word phrase, or at least every phrase ever searched for.)

Quote:
It used to be that I could get different results by going to Google.co.uk or using private-browsing options in Firefox or Chrome. That doesn't work very well any more, as Google "analytics"--i.e. it spying on you and your IP address--keep getting better.

Yeah, you need to not be logged into Google, set the voluntary "Do Not Track" flag, wipe cookies and disable supercookies (e.g. Java or Flash storage - I don't allow those frameworks to run without explicit authorization.) Tell the browser/system not to give out my location. I also blackhole some advertiser hostnames in my /etc/hosts including Google Analytics. I tell Chrome to discard all cookies when the app quits entirely. I can't change my IP address, but I have dynamic IP so that changes on its own every few days.

Google does have at least a pretense of "don't be evil" so I really doubt they'd use every conceivable option to track you. If you really want to chew through the easy straps, they want to let you go, lest they be accused of spying. (and frankly, their own people have to be able to get free, so they can troubleshoot the search engine.) Of course, not everyone is so well-behaved, so if that's a worry, it's time to TOR up.

Quote:
I actually had to forcibly beat a major newspaper humor columnist figuratively about the head with his own rolled-up newspaper because he kept persistently using Google searches to justify and reinforce his beliefs and opinions, but was blissfully unaware--until I told him and younger staffers confirmed--that Google continually re-calibrates its search results to "tell him what he wants to hear" based on his past searches and site clicks.

Yes. That is Google Personalized Search. It boosts the stuff you already searched, clicked, read, often wrote, and agree with (based on big-data analytics). A big part of Google Plus (the Facebook competitor) is using social media to tune your search results to favor your friends and those you agree with (complete with little pictures of the authors gleaned from their Google Plus account). That's an echo chamber, and the Internet already does too much of that. No, I search to find things I don't know. If only I could make that feature work in reverse!


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2016 10:51 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 12:59 pm
Posts: 523
robertmacdowell wrote:
I also blackhole some advertiser hostnames in my /etc/hosts including Google Analytics.

I'll second the recommendation to use a hosts file, it can block lots of garbage.

Here's a URL for one (mainly for Windows):

http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2016 4:56 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:52 pm
Posts: 909
Hi,

I even found hosts on Windows XP. I still use it XP since many of the DOS programs I still use do not want to run on Win 7 or higher and the folder structure in Win 7 is so different from the one used in XP that I have not felt I wanted to learn WIN 7.

There are some items that I want to use that need WIN 7 so I am trying to learn WIN 7.

Gad. I enjoy railroading but have to learn computer to get what I want. I always held the belief that anything shipped without a detailed manual was a broken product. Microsoft had a fairly complere Windows book in Win 98 and maybe Win ME. The've never shipped even a complete ebook for XP.

Oh well, so I'm conservative (the original definition, not the political one).

Thanks.

Doug vV


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 8:20 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2431
Back to the original question.

Technically speaking, from an engineering point of view, it's a "Railroad Bridge", as it carries the railroad, which in turn carries the train.

That has very little to do with what the public calls them. They use both terms interchangeably, just like calling a locomotive an "engine" and calling a turnout a "switch".

It's especially bad for trestle bridges, which are quite often referred to as "Train Trestles", often with creative spelling for the second word, such as "Tressel" or "Trellis".

For most purposes, you can use the terms interchangeably.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:48 pm 

Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 7:57 am
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Location: Faulkland, Delaware
"You see Rusty, the train car in the front makes the train go."

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:27 pm 

Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 1:37 pm
Posts: 895
I don't mean to be arrogant, but it doesn't matter whether more people are observed to use a wrong construction. Standard written English is not a democracy.

'Train bridge' is no more a current construction than is 'train engine' or 'train cars' (even though both of these have a certain historical relevance, just as common usage a century and more ago was 'steam cars' or just 'the cars' for a conveyance that ran on a track and was pulled by a steam locomotive...)

Sure, there are examples of expressions, neologisms, even solecisms that come to be accepted or even preferred. I am tempted (pun intended) to mention 'apple' as an etymological example. "Butterfly" is said to be another. I have a particular dislike of the currently 'trending' usage of 'gift' as a verb. Or, for that matter, misspellings (especially in this modern age of pervasive access both to automatic semantic checking and online reference sources).

And sure, this is English, the great adoptive mongrel of languages - not the French of the Academie Francaise, where folks can define whole grammatical constructions that can't be spoken, or take a perfectly well-understood diphthong like 'oi' and pronounce it as spelled, out of all reason, or wait until their opponents have gone on summer vacation and vote to change the orthography of the word for 'onion' into something weird and strange. Whether or not Jack Lang would agree, I think English is better and more vital for tolerating potentially "corrupting" or even "wrong" influences to give expression and flavor. But (as a card-carrying honoree of the NCTE) I also would note that while salt is good, and salt that has lost its saltness may not be good for much, it is also true that if everything gets salted as a rule, both taste and enjoyment may suffer...

I accept the point that language can be about communication, perhaps even primarily. If Kate runs toward my locomotive waving red bloomers and says 'the train bridge is out!' I'm going to apply the brakes, not keep going. There are some very competent people -- two who post to this list -- who just don't or can't use the language precisely or orthographically, and I will not beat them over the head for their grammar instead of listening and helping where I can. Life and society don't really go forward if we mistake fluency with maps for navigating the territory for good ends...

However, just as a thesaurus is not a book of convenient synonyms but a collection of words with different, and often rich, semantic shades of meaning, standard written English is a method, and opportunity, to get very detailed, precise, and pleasing communication from a writer to his or her* readers. Truth to tell, that applies fairly well to excessive use of hoity-toity language or excessive rigor or precision in normal expression ... normal people already laugh as we comma cops have these discussions, just as they laugh and roll their eyes when anyone starts in answering a question with a phrase like "that's a common misconception..."


*I confess to being one of those radicals who wants to apply the same rule to use of second-person singular that English adopted for the plural centuries ago. That gets rid of all the prissy residual need for gender pronoun enumerations to avoid any hint of sexism, weird neologisms like 'hiser', and so forth. Likewise I remain convinced that old fox Strunk had the semantic sense of 'that' and 'which' reversed, and Mr. White's book has done immeasurable harm over the years in convincing generations of English students otherwise... But few will note, or long remember, what I say here about either one...

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 Post subject: Re: Is it a Train Bridge or a Railroad Bridge?
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:15 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 4:59 pm
Posts: 323
Location: western Maryland
Is it a highway bridge or is it a car, truck and bus bridge?

I dunno?!?!?!?

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